Cameia National Park

Year of compilation: 2001

Site description
Cameia National Park lies within the 1,200 mm isohyet, and is triangular, with the Cameia–Luacano road forming the northern boundary, the Chifumage river the southern part of the eastern boundary and the Lumege and Luena rivers the south-western boundary. Two towns, Cameia (formerly called Lumege) and Luacano, are respectively in the north-western and north-eastern corners of the park. Much of the park consists of seasonally inundated plains that form part of the Zambezi river basin, with the northern half of the park draining into the Chifumage river. There are also extensive miombo woodlands, similar in structure to those in the Zambezi basin of western Zambia. The park is a representative sample of habitat not occurring elsewhere in Angola. Two lakes, Lago Cameia and Lago Dilolo (the largest lake in Angola) lie outside the park boundaries and both have extensive reedbeds and grassy swamps that are rich in aquatic bird species.

Key biodiversity
See Box and Table 3 for key species. The avifauna of the park is poorly known and no species list is available. All records are of species collected or observed at localities adjacent to the park (Lago Dilolo, Lago Cameia and Sandando; (Pinto 1965, 1973a). The site is important for species of the Zambezian biome, and the lakes and wetland habitats along the Chifumage, Lumege, Luena and Luvua rivers support at least 29 species of waterbird (20% of the Angolan list), some in numbers considered at least nationally important. One of the two isolated small populations of Francolinus albigularis south of the Equator occurs in eastern Moxico (Hall 1960b) and is likely to occur on Cameia. Charadrius forbesi has been collected at Cazombo, Calunda and along the Muaco river (Pinto 1973a) east of Cameia and is likely to occur in the park. Other poorly known species from the general area include Ardeola rufiventris, Caprimulgus natalensis, Macronyx ameliae and Lagonosticta nitidula. Birds identified as Ploceus velatus, which occur at Lago Cameia and Lago Dilolo, have recently been the subject of debate (Louette and Benson 1982; Louette 1984; Dean 1996) it is possible that this is a species new to science and that it occurs in the park.

Non-bird biodiversity: The carnivore Lycaon pictus (EN) has been recorded from the park (Cabral and Simões 1988), but there are no data on its current status.

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
Cameia National Park was established as a Game Reserve in 1938 and proclaimed a National Park in 1957 (Huntley 1974a). Huntley (1974a) noted that the immense herds of large herbivores had been severely reduced by poaching by the early 1970s. The present status of large herbivore populations in the park is unknown.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Cameia National Park. Downloaded from on 24/01/2022.